Link building can seem like a long process. With a myriad of articles and books on the subject, it can feel like the research alone takes forever, let alone actually going through the process. Some online marketing gurus specialize in just this aspect of the business and they guide us through the process and provide much-needed shortcuts. Garrett French, who wrote the article “How to Build Links Faster: 5 Tips for Faster Link Qualification”, is one of those gurus.
French’s 5 suggested tips for faster link qualification are as follows:
1. Align link prospecting methods with linkable assets: your linkable assets need to line up with your link prospecting methods, so that they are pre-qualified as link prospects. Doing this will shortening the time it takes to decide whether or not to add them to what French calls your “outreach list”.
2. Check the tool-based URL quality scores: there are link prospect sources, such as Linkscape and MajesticSEO, which provide a scoring method that estimates the value or trust that given pages have earned. This information allows you to weed through your prospects and focus on the ones that give the best returns. French recommends saving it all though, as “today’s trash could be tomorrow’s treasure when you create and launch new linkable assets!”
3. Count URL, hostname occurrences in SERPs and competitor backlinks: “The number of times a URL and/or hostname appears can be a vital signal of quality. If you’re using queries for your link prospecting, we highly recommend running them through the URL and Hostname Counter Tool and the process outlined in Analyzing SERP Dominators For Link Opportunities. If you use link building queries in place of your targeted SEO keywords, you will more-quickly discover larger numbers of qualified prospects.” The key to this approach is focusing on a single linkable asset and working through each one. This is not a time for multi-tasking.
4. Remove duplicate hostname occurrences from big lists: use the “Remove URLs with Duplicate Hosts” tool to ensure a concise list of hostnames. This way you will get the top URLs from each website, rather than an overload of the same URLs over and over again. Think of this as your big weeding out stage.
5. Make quicker visits to each URL for final decision making: the first steps have been about removing the excess and getting a list of quality URLs. Now the tedious part of qualifying each URL by hand comes in. There are a few steps that can make it faster, including disabling the imaged in your browses, using something like the “URL Reviewer” to open a list of URLs in new tabs in your browser, and then running through them individually.
Once you’ve built your list of links, remember to also make a list of prospects that you don’t want, so you can avoid those URLs in the future. Link building is still not an instant process, but following these tips will help streamline it and make it a little less overwhelming.